Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Week 2: Cooking my way thru the Runner's World Cookbook

Week two of my adventure in cooking.

Eric and I have never had so many different things in such a short period of time! I continue to find all of the recipes very simple and user friendly.

Multigrain Pancakes
Pancakes are always a hit and I'm happy to have another recipe to add to my repertoire.
This was an easy mid week dinner and was a snap to put together (as pancakes should be) and they turned out very nicely. There was nothing remarkable about these pancakes- they were very pleasant and delicious (as pancakes should be.)
I have never used cornmeal or oats in my pancakes because I am the least creative human to ever live and I found them to be a nice addition. Well, the oats anyway. Who notices cornmeal?
I suppose you could health these up by topping them with some random fruit of yogurt or such nonsense but we took the legit route and doused them in syrup. #winning

Spinach, bacon and sweet potato salad
I made this post long run last week because I was seriously wishing for some spinach and this was the most spinachy option in the book.
With a vegetarian in the house I decided it would be easier to simply make some fakeon and call it good, rather than making a teensy bit of real bacon and a teensy bit of fakeon bacon. (whatever, I was hungry!)
I must be honest- I wasn't thinking this would be very good. I was thinking that it was going to be bland and one dimensional.
I was wrong. It was great. It took like, 5 minutes to make (well, the sweet potatoes took about 30 min to cook but we don't count that.)
This is easy enough to make post long run.
It was EXCELLENT- I would make this again in a heartbeat. (I'd make it next week if I didn't have 200 recipes to work through!) The absence of real bacon was not offensive, it was full of good flavors and health and nutrients and what not. I shoved it in my mouth at top speed and was very happy.
Clearly, these are ingredients that I cook with often and usually shove into a burrito or similar. Changing it up to a salad, with the pleasant addition of the citrus-y dressing made "the usual" taste new and fresh. Really good- an easy MUST repeat!

Garlic shrimp with while beans and tomatoes
I made the Garlic shrimp with white beans and tomatoes for my sister and me, and the same recipe minus the shrimp plus a vegetarian Italian sausage for Eric. 
As most of the recipes have thus far, this came together easily. I omitted the parsley because I did not have any but otherwise followed the recipe.
Overall..... This was "meh". We certainly ate it but found it to be unexciting- the flavors were more bland than we had hoped for and the tomatoes really over powered the shrimp,
As a group we felt the recipe could be significantly improved by adding a half a sauteed onion, possibly a diced red pepper and definitely a few cups of baby spinach. I will give that a try at some point and report back!
(editors note) I finished up some of the leftovers a couple of days after making the original recipe and found them to me much better- the flavors had some some mingling and it was pretty good. Also- I was very hungry so there's that...

Banana oat energy bars
I was completely out of things to eat pre run over the weekend and since I had all the ingredients in the house I made these up. So far, I have noticed that the writers of the cookbook seem to be very optimistic about our abilities to speedily prepare things for cooking. While this came together in the most simple way yet again, they underestimated the time it takes to get shit from the pantry to completion. Just saying. I'm fast but not THAT fast.
Bottom line these could not have been easier. I cooked them for a full 10 minutes longer than the recipe suggested and they were just firm enough to be viable at that point (40 min at 350)
If you don't care for bananas you will not care for these because the banana really dominates. While I had no issue with the cranberry and walnut additions I think these would also be nice with dates, pecans or dried cherries. I ate two big squares pre run and my belly never complained so I declare them to be a great success!
One critical mention- they were VERY sweet (and that is coming from me, the woman with an insatiable sweet tooth!) There was a full cup of sugar in them which I did not bat an eye at because sugar is my boo. But yikes- cut that shit back. I'd shoot for a half cup next time and see how things turned out. (if you want your bars sweeter than a cookie follow the recipe. if not, listen to me!)

More to come next week.
Possibly tackling some smoothies (my least favorite thing ever) and trying to figure out how on earth I am going to make things like "meatloaf" veggie friendly. Inside info: I'm NOT...



  1. The spinach, sweet potato, red onion and bacon salad is the most requested side dish in my house. EVERYONE loves it.

  2. The spinach, sweet potato, red onion and bacon salad is the most requested side dish in my house. EVERYONE loves it.

    1. Seriously- it is delicious! We loved it. :-)

  3. ARGH! I just typed out a post and my idiotic, non techie self, some how deleted it!!! Anyway, I don't think you and I ever met. But I'm Angie's friend from college and Jon and I grew up together. I heard about your blog from Jon's podcast. I LOVE YOUR BLOG!!!!!!!! AND I LOVE YOUR FOODIE POSTS!!!!!!!! Thanks for all of your hard work and posts!!!!!!! (Mary)

    1. Hi! I'm so glad you like my blog and I definitely know who you are, even though we (somehow) have never met. How is that possible!? Thank you for reading and hopefully we will meet in real life soon :-)

  4. I'm totally going to make that salad (with turkey bacon)!